BY- JAYA CHOUDHARY
What is a cyclone
The term ‘Cyclone’ is derived from the Greek word ‘Cyclos,’ which meaning ‘Snake coiling.’ Cyclones are formed by atmospheric disturbances around a low-pressure region and are typically accompanied by powerful storms and severe weather conditions. A tropical cyclone is essentially a deep low-pressure area.
History of naming cyclones
Tropical storms and hurricanes were tracked by year and the sequence in which they occurred until the early 1950s. It was discovered through time that using short, easily remembered names in both written and spoken communications saves time and decreases confusion when two or more tropical storms occur at the same time. Confusion and false rumors had already ensued when storm advisories aired from radio stations were misinterpreted as warnings for an altogether other storm hundreds of miles away.
The US meteorological service formally embraced the concept in 1953, creating a new phonetic alphabet (international) of women’s names from A through W, excluding Q, U, X, Y, and Z. Following protests by women’s liberation organizations in the 1960s and 1970s aided in changing the naming procedure for the storms to include male names in 1978.
So how are names picked today?
If a cyclone has a speed of greater than 34 nautical miles per hour, it must be given a specific name. If the storm’s speed reaches or exceeds 74 mph, it is categorized as a hurricane/cyclone/typhoon. The names on the list must be brief, unique, and relevant to the cultural and geographic locations in order for people to remember them. The Regional Specialised Meteorological Centres (RSMCs) and Tropical Cyclone Warning Centres (TCWCs) identify cyclones that originate in any ocean basin across the world (TCWCs). There are six RSMCs in the globe, one of which is the India Meteorological Department (IMD).
In the year 2000, a group of nations known as WMO/ESCAP (World Meteorological Organization/United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific), which included Bangladesh, India, the Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Thailand, decided to begin naming cyclones in the region. In 2018, the WMO/ESCAP extended to include five more countries: Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Yemen.
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Cyclones emerging across the north Indian Ocean, encompassing the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea, are named by the India Meteorological Department (IMD). It also gives alerts on the development of cyclones and storms to 12 other nations in the region.IMD issued a list of 169 cyclone names in April 2020. The aforementioned WMO/ESCAP member states submitted 13 ideas.
For the Atlantic basin, there are six alphabetical lists of 21 names each and the lists cycle annually. So, for example, several of the names on the 2018 list, which begins with Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debby, and Ernesto, are quite likely to reappear in 2024. Because there aren’t enough available names, the letters Q, U, X, Y, and Z aren’t used. If a hurricane or typhoon causes significant damage, its name is removed from the list. Katrina (2005), Sandy (2012), Haiyan (2013), Meranti (2016), Harvey (2017), Irma (2017), and Michael (2018) are among the famous names that have been decommissioned.